MEET | Chino Roque: First Filipino to go to space

 
Photo courtesy of Axe Philippines
 
The first Filipino astronaut who will fly into space in 2014 has been named.
 
Chino Roque, who bested 28,000 aspiring astronauts in the Philippines, down to 400, then 50, and finally down to the top 3, will join 21 others from 60 countries for the 30-minute trip to space.

The 22-year old is a psychology graduate from the De La Salle University Manila.

He is a crossfit coach and grew up joining different competitions. He is the youngest among the Filipino candidates Evan Ray Datuin and Ramil Santos.

Chino Roque together with fellow competitors Evan Ray Datuin and Ramil Santos at the Kennedy Space Center Rocket Garden. Photo courtesy of Axe Philippines

Roque was replacement for Air Force pilot Lt. Mario Mendoza Jr., who dropped out of the space race citing conflicts in schedule. He was selected through an electronic raffle.

Recently, the three Filipinos underwent rigorous astronaut training at the AXE Apollo Space Camp in Orlando, Florida.

The 22 lucky winners will receive tickets to fly into space aboard X-COR Aerospace Lynx Aircraft in 2014.

For $95,000 per ticket, space expedition corporation's reusable shuttle is expected to start flying customers to space in 2015.
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